Sacred Heart r-sophomore Shane Gibson (Killingly, CT) was named the Choice Hotels Northeast Conference Player of the Week on Monday by the league office. It is the first award for Gibson and the second for the Pioneers this season. SHU's Jerrell Thompson (Plainfield, NJ) earned the honor earlier this season after leading the Pioneers past New Hampshire.
With Gibson as the catalyst, Sacred Heart has now won three straight games, including a 71-62 road victory over Yale on Sunday. Gibson registered a career-high 23 points, pulled down eight rebounds, made two steals and blocked a shot as the Pioneers won for the first time at the John J. Lee Amphitheater. He shot 8-16 from the field and hit a career-best five three-pointers. Facing a Yale team that already beat Boston College and nearly upset Providence, Sacred Heart jumped out to a 38-21 lead at the break behind Gibson's 11 points, which included a 3-5 performance from outside the arc. After the Pioneers extended their advantage to 21 points early in the second half, Yale chipped away at the lead until cutting it to 49-42 with 11 minutes to play. Gibson halted the run with a long three-pointer, then hit two free throws to keep the lead in double digits. His putback with 5:18 to play gave Sacred Heart a 60-49 edge and helped keep the Bulldogs at bay. Gibson, a native of Killingly, CT, recorded his eighth double digit game this season and his second 20-point effort of the year. He has averaged 19.3 points and 7.0 rebounds over the three-game win streak, and now leads the team and ranks 11th in the NEC with 14.2 ppg. Gibson is also ninth on the circuit with 2.1 made three-pointers per game.
Gibson and the Pioneers will take on Providence College from the Big East on Tuesday night. Tipoff is 7 pm at the Dunkin' Donuts Center in Providence.